The Chicago Tribune reported recently on the state of the finance industry in the Chicago area. Reports indicate smaller, more nimble finance companies in Chicago are tapping an exodus of traders, bankers and investment managers:
Employment in the securities and commodity industries has held steady in the Windy City, showing an unusual resilience while marquee names such as Citigroup, Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers hemorrhage billions of dollars in connection with subprime mortgages. Members of the Chicago trading community say the transparency and technology provided by the futures and options exchanges has insulated them from losses the International Monetary Fund estimates will total $1 trillion.
Looking at the historical numbers, Chicago passed NYC in banking employment in 2001, but that industry is in slow decline in Chicago after peaking in late 2006. Securities jobs in Chicago have remained steady, while this sector in New York City began its sharp decline in September 2007. I'd say any evidence of Chicago growth based on New York's finance job loss is still anecdotal. (Click the chart for a bigger image.)
Chicago Trib link via Steve Bartin.